The “Other” Calibration

Led Almost anyone in call center management or quality assessment (QA) have participated in a "traditional" call calibration session. A traditional calibration session is where you get your quality team together in a room (e.g. supervisors, QA analysts, call center managers). You listen to a call as a group. You argue about how it should be scored. When the people who have the conference room booked after you start standing outside the door getting impatient you call it quits. Everyone leaves determined to keep scoring calls "their way".

There is, however, another form of calibration that can be an effective management tool. It requires that you keep a record of how each person analyzed phone calls. If the only time they score calls is for calibration sessions, then make sure you record their "pre-calibration" scores. It’s also important that you record how they analyzed each behavioral QA element, not just the overall score.

If you are tracking averages on each element over time, you can begin to compare each analyst’s average to the group average. What will eventually emerge is a picture of which QA analysts score easier or harder than average on given elements. This allows you to pinpoint specific analysts and specific elements where he/she is particularly harsh or lenient. Now you can tactically focus your management efforts to address specific analysts on specific elements.

I’ve witnessed several clients who can’t do this because they either don’t track individual element scores or their scoring software doesn’t output the data in a useful manner. I would suggest that the potential benefits are reason enough to make some program changes part of your 2008 strategic plan!

Creative Commons photo courtesy of Flickr and jmaclynn

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